General Electric is in the midst of a transformation. The manufacturing giant will have a new CFO as it continues to separate into three public companies.
GE announced on Thursday that Carolina Dybeck Happe, CFO at GE, will step down from her current role in September. Dybeck Happe is expected to remain an SVP at GE for a period of time to assist with the transition. “This is a time of tremendous momentum and accomplishment for GE,” she said in a LinkedIn post on Thursday. “It is a privilege to work alongside this extraordinary finance team.”
Rahul Ghai will succeed Dybeck Happe, taking on the role of SVP and CFO. “This is the right time to make this change as GE progresses toward launching GE Vernova and GE Aerospace as standalone businesses,” GE CEO Larry Culp said in a statement.
GE’s first spinoff was GE HealthCare (Nasdaq: GEHC), which produces medical imaging equipment and tech devices. The company went public on Jan. 4. The next separation, GE Vernova, which houses the energy portfolio, has a spinoff planned for early 2024. That will leave GE Aerospace to continue as the entity that had been GE.
Ghai has been the CFO of GE Aerospace since August 2022. So, from Sept. 1 until the GE Vernova spinoff occurs, he will continue to perform his current role while also serving as CFO of GE. After the spinoff, GE will become known as GE Aerospace, focused on aviation, and Ghai will remain the CFO, and Culp will be the CEO of GE Aerospace.
Before GE, Ghai served in leadership roles including EVP and CFO at Otis Worldwide Corporation and SVP and CFO of Harris Corporation.
During the past few years, Dybeck Happe “played a crucial role in helping to significantly reduce GE’s debt, improve our financial and operating performance, and build the strategy and execution of our spinoffs plan,” Culp said. She joined GE in 2020 from Maersk where she served as CFO. Before Maersk, she spent 16 years at Assa Abloy, including seven years as CFO.
GE reported its Q1 2023 earnings in April. Revenue came in above expectations at $14.49 billion versus the estimate of $13.36 billion. “We reported our first positive free cash flow in the first quarter in nearly a decade,” Culp said in the earnings statement. GE Aerospace, the strongest segment, saw revenue rise 25% from a year earlier to $6.98 billion.
The CFO transition “we think most likely represents a ‘normal course’ transition as the company approaches its planned separation of GE Vernova,” Citi analysts wrote in a note on Thursday. “We view Mr. Ghai as a good fit for the role.” And with Dybeck Happe expected to stay on for a period, “we surmise that the transition reflects an orderly succession process,” they wrote. GE’s stock price closed on Thursday at $104.1, up about 0.54%.
GE and Dybeck Happe agreed that she will remain “eligible for the severance benefits under her existing employment agreement and applicable equity award agreements if she resigns for ‘good reason’ on or before Feb. 14, 2024, as a result of the CFO transition,” according to the company’s SEC filings.
“Under Larry’s leadership, we’ve worked to transform one of the world’s most iconic companies,” Dybeck Happe said on LinkedIn. “My focus over the coming months will be to set our remaining businesses up for success as they launch as independent companies,” she said.
Upcoming event: How can you ensure your company uses the current environment as an opportunity to thrive? Join us for Fortune’s Emerging CFO’s virtual conversation, in collaboration with Workday (a CFO Daily sponsor), “Maintaining a Growth Mindset In Turbulent Economic Waters,” Wednesday, June 21, from 11 a.m. to noon ET. Geoff Colvin, senior editor at large at Fortune, and I will talk with McKinsey & Company Senior Partner Ishaan Seth on how finance leaders can think differently, take bold moves, enhance collaboration, and modernize their KPIs and metrics. From the CFO perspective, Dan Durn, CFO at Adobe, Mandy Fields, CFO at e.l.f. Beauty, and Xihao Hu, CFO at TD Bank in the U.S., will share their best practices. Click here to register!
A new study published by Oxford Economics, a global advisory firm, assesses the impact of YouTube creators on the U.S. economy, culture, and society. In 2022, YouTube’s creator ecosystem contributed more than $35 billion to the U.S. gross domestic product and supported over 390,000 full-time equivalent jobs, according to the report. The research also provides insight into how YouTube creators and users, parents, and teachers feel about the platform’s impact on American life.
Between 2021 and 2022, in the U.S., the number of YouTube channels with 1 million subscribers increased by more than 15% year over year. In addition, the number of YouTube channels making $100,000 or more in revenue also went up by 5%. Sixty-nine percent of creators who earn money from YouTube agree that the revenue they receive from advertisements being placed on their YouTube content is an important source of income for them.
Erin Brewer was named CFO at Lyft (Nasdaq: LYFT), effective July 10. Brewer replaces Elaine Paul, who is leaving Lyft but will remain as an advisor until Nov. 30. Brewer previously served as managing director of enterprise finance at Charles Schwab & Co. Before Schwab, she served as head of strategy and finance at Atlassian. Brewer spent 13 years at McKesson in leadership roles, including EVP and chief accounting officer.
Steve Weber was promoted to CFO at FICO (NYSE: FICO), an analytics software company. Weber was named interim CFO in January 2023, succeeding Michael McLaughlin. FICO retained a global executive search firm and executed a search before selecting Weber, according to the company. Before taking on the interim CFO role, Weber served as the company’s VP, treasurer, tax, and investor relations. At FICO, he has served as head of FP&A, has led several public bond issuances, and managed syndicated bank lending.
Elizabeth “Beth” Eby was named CFO at SunPower Corp. (Nasdaq: SPWR), a solar technology and energy services company, effective May 30. Eby brings more than 30 years of experience in financial strategy. She most recently served as CFO of NeoPhotonics Corporation, a provider of high-speed digital optics. Before that, Eby grew her career at Intel Corporation, where she held several senior roles during her more than 25-year tenure, including VP of finance and Group CFO for the Internet of Things business.
Blake Grayson was named CFO at DocuSign (Nasdaq: DOCU). Blake will succeed Cynthia Gaylor. As previously announced, Gaylor will remain as DocuSign’s CFO through the release of the company’s Q1 earnings. Most recently, Blake served as CFO of The Trade Desk, leading the company’s overall financial activities, including controllership, tax, treasury, analysis, investor relations, corporate development, facilities, and financial operations. Before that, he served in various finance leadership roles at Amazon for over a decade.
Nchacha E. Etta was named EVP and CFO at Omnicell, Inc.(Nasdaq: OMCL), a maker of automation systems for hospitals and pharmacies, effective June 1. Etta succeeds Peter J. Kuipers, who, as previously announced, will be stepping down from the role. Etta most recently served as CFO of Essilor of America, Inc., a subsidiary of EssilorLuxottica SA. Before that, Etta served as the Worldwide VP and CFO of Johnson & Johnson Vision. He has also served in several financial roles of increasing responsibility at The Coca-Cola Company, Microsoft Corporation, and Eli Lilly and Company.
William G. Monroe IV was named CFO at Community Healthcare Trust Incorporated (NYSE: CHCT), effective June 1. Monroe has served as managing director of the Healthcare Investment Banking Group at Truist Securities, Inc. in Atlanta. He joined Truist Securities, Inc. as a VP in 2011 via its predecessor firm SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, Inc. Monroe was previously VP of private equity Placement at Fortress Group, Inc. He began his investment banking career at J.P. Morgan Securities LLC in New York, where he was an associate in the Syndicated & Leveraged Finance Group.
“You are not a slacker if you cut yourself some slack.”
—During Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates’ recent commencement speech to the forestry and engineering graduates of Northern Arizona University, he looked kindly on slacking but admitted that he drove himself and his colleagues hard back in the early days of the web, Fortune reported. Gates acknowledged that it took a long time to let that lesson sink in for himself.